Cristina Ciubotaru: The judiciary is not the third, but one of three branches of power

Only the justice seeker wants a correct decision in court, while the politicians want convenient settlement for the arrangements they promote. For years, the reformation of the justice system has been stagnant because the “sick person” was diagnosed incorrectly from the start and the bad treatment cannot change the physical and moral state of this, lawyer Cristina Ciubotaru, anticorruption expert, stated in a public debate hosted by IPN.

A correct approach includes a sincere exchange of opinions and admission of the problems, including of political influence, of any government, not only of the past ones. “The people do not trust the politicians, the Government, the Parliament and why should the political class subject the justice system to tests that these should take themselves?. We now see that the property of judges is being thoroughly examined. This is good but I, as a citizen, want to see the Government and Parliament also subject to tests. That pre-vetting commission should also submit property and interest statements and be subject to ethical checks before it examines the others,” stated the expert.

The government should realize that the state consists of three branches and the judiciary is not the third, but one of the three branches and we, as society, experience problems in justice, Government and Parliament. The state, in general, has integrity, efficiency problems. A dialogue between the branches of power is possible only when the judicial branch is not belittled, said Cristina Țărnă.

She noted that a dialogue is anyway necessary for correctly diagnosing the situation. “On the one hand, we want to increase the efficiency of the judicial system so that experienced, motivated judges come and these should be assisted by relevant institutions, like the National Institute of Justice”.

As regards the integrity, the way in which the Superior Council of Magistracy and the Superior Council of Prosecutors work is important. When the political class struggles to control the Councils, these cannot be trusted as being efficient managers of the integrity processes in justice. The Superior Council of Magistracy has now all the instruments for ensuring a correct climate, for penalizing corrupt and dishonest behavior. But it does not do it because it is politicized. The integrity problem in justice is generated by the political factor that controls the system’s attempts to manage itself.

Even if there are upright and well-trained judges who realize what ensuring correctness and justice means for the people, the public forms impressions based on high-profile cases. But these cases constitute only a small part of the whole workload. “I’m for creating a trustworthy special court – for cases of corruption and, possibly, for organized crime. It can consist of five judges who would ensure maximum transparency. This way, political interference would be reduced and the people would know what’s going on,” said the expert.

The debate titled “Justice sector reform: expectations, actions and consequenceswas staged by IPN News Agency as part of the project “Support for the Justice Reform through multimedia coverage of cases of alleged injustice”.

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